CLARKS SUMMIT — Abington Heights quarterback Jordan Hollander entered Saturday’s game with two goals: End the season on a positive note and win one final game for the seniors.
Hollander, a senior, played a big role in the Comets’ 31-19 victory over Scranton in a Lackawanna Football Conference Division 1 contest at Comets Stadium. He scored two touchdowns and was a key cog in a spirited defensive effort.
“I’m extremely excited for the entire team and the senior class,” Abington Heights head coach Joe Repshis said. “They got a hard-fought win in the last home game. I’ve said all year, they’ve been resilient and continued to work hard. To get the win today was very deserving.”
After a scoreless first quarter, Abington Heights’ Colin McCreary connected with Anthony Kimble for a 9-yard touchdown after recovering the ball when his 26-yard field goal attempt was blocked by Scranton’s Alex Luna.
McCreary added the extra point to give the Comets a 7-0 lead with 6:19 remaining in the second quarter.
“Obviously, you don’t want your field goal to get blocked or take away an opportunity to get points on the board,” McCreary said. “I just tried to react to the ball and make a positive out of it. Anthony Kimble did a great job of getting open in the end zone.”
Scranton (4-5, 3-3 LFC Div. 1) answered on the next drive when quarterback Jacob Watts scored on a 1-yard run to cap an 8-play, 75-yard drive. Watts connected with Marcus Pacheco for receptions of 20 and 43 yards to set up the touchdown. Brian Villanueva’s extra point tied the game at 7-all with 3:04 left in the second quarter.
Abington Heights (5-5, 3-4) regained the lead on the ensuing possession when Hollander scored on a 9-yard run after breaking a tackle near the goal line. Hollander accounted for all but one yard during the 58-yard drive.
“I just kept my feet going, got under the tackle and went for the end zone,” Hollander said.
The Comets added to their lead when McCreary connected on a 27-yard field goal with 7:08 remaining in the third quarter. Hollander found McCreary for a 24-yard completion and Brandon Hardy for 54 yards, but the drive stalled inside the 10-yard line.
After the Abington Heights defense stuffed Scranton’s Josh Williams for no gain on a 4th-and-1 play from the Knights’ 29-yard line, the Comets offense wasted little time finding the end zone.
Hollander, who completed 6 of 9 passes for 146 yards, including 133 in the second half, hit Hardy for a 27-yard touchdown on a fade route, two plays after the turnover on downs, to give the Comets a 24-7 lead with 4:02 left in the third quarter.
“Our coaches kept preaching to get one more win for the seniors,” Hollander said. “We came out here and really put it all together for four quarters.”
Watts scored his second 1-yard touchdown on the next drive to cut the Knights deficit to nine points with 2:23 remaining in the third quarter. Logan Hivner blocked the extra point attempt.
The Comets increased their lead again when running back Rheyse Green, who accounted for 73 yards on 24 carries, scored on a 2-yard run to end an 8-play, 53-yard drive and give the Comets a 31-13 lead with 7:12 left in the fourth quarter.
Scranton added a late touchdown when Watts, who completed 12 of 23 passes for 223 yards, found Rayquan Groves for a 39-yard score with 4:57 remaining in the game.
“He’s a very good athlete and a very good kid,” Scranton head coach Mike Marichak said of Watts. “We were able to throw the ball against them but defensively we couldn’t get a stop. Abington (Heights) is a good football team and they took it to us a little bit today.”
Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.